Brookside is a former mining town, predominantly settled by Eastern European immigrants, located in north-central Jefferson County. Brookside was incorporated in 1898. The descriptive name Brookside stems from the Five-Mile creek that flows through the town.
Brookside Alabama History
The Brookside mine was opened in 1886 by the Coalburg Coal and Coke Company. It was purchased one year later by the Sloss Iron and Steel Company as a source of fuel for their blast furnaces in Birmingham. Brookside served as the headquarters for four Sloss-owned mines in the immediate area (Cardiff, Coalburg, Brazil and Brookside). Because the capacity of Brookside’s processing equipment exceeded the mine output, some of the slack from the Brazil mine was brought to Brookside for washing and coking.
Sloss, like other employers in the booming industrial expansion of the early 20th century, had difficulty recruiting skilled labor. Recruitment efforts extended internationally and Brookside became the home of many Czechoslovakian immigrants and their families who made their way to the mines. As Brookside became a destination for Eastern European miners in the area, the culture of the town reflected their ethnic traditions. Between 1910 and 1920, mining operations jumped around to several seams and the number of miners fluctuated between a low of 54 in 1910 and a high of over 600 in 1914.
The 1920 Alabama coal strike, combined with a global depreciation in the coal market, led to a shutdown of the mine. When the strike was settled in 1921, Brookside mine was never re-opened.
Brookside Alabama Demographic
As of the 2010 census, the population of the town was 1,363. At the 2000 census, there were 1,393 people, 546 households, and 393 families living in the town. The population density was 232.8 people per square mile (89.9/km2). There were 613 housing units at an average density of 102.4 per square mile. The racial makeup of the town was 90.52% White, 8.69% Black or African American, 0.36% Native American, 0.14% from other races, and 0.29% from two or more races. 0.93% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Brookside City Hall Phone: 205-674-9275
Brookside Municipal Court Phone: 205-674-9275
Brookside Fire Department: 205-674-8205
Brookside Police Department: 205-674-9275